Decision Making 
- Decisions, decisions… 
- Defining the Problem 
- Decisions – Gathering information 
- Decisions – Identify Limiting Factors and Constraints 
- Decisions – Analyzing Possible Solutions
- Decisions – Making the Call 
- Decision Making – Bad Call! 
- Decisions – Your Need for Cognitive Closure 
- Decisionmaking and the Grocery Checkout Line 
Develop potential solutions
Now comes the step where you start brainstorming decisions and possible options that may generate positive outcomes. In a pinch you will move through these steps quickly. When you have time, you can think a little more on these items. Decision-making is not as involved as Strategic Planning, but it impacts your operations so you need to devote yourself to getting better at making decisions.
You could write these down so that you can take a look at them. The next step is thinking it through, so you need to prep for that. Make a list of the options. Don’t worry too much at this time about the best solution, just get them down on paper or sorted in your head.
You can throw out the obvious ones that will not fit your criteria for success. If replacing a server is not an option after a crash, then don’t list it. If swapping parts in a dead machine is an option – list it.
Once you have your list move to…
Analyzing the alternatives
Now take the list and review it? What might work and what might not? What cost money and what does not? What can staff do and what can they not do? What has worked before and what has not? What does management expect? What takes time and what is fastest?
The outcome should fall into your matrix for good decisions. Most of the time it will be success if it:
- Makes money for the firm
- Saves money for the firm
- Gets people back to work fast
- Preps for the long haul
- Expands operations
- Avoids the same problem in the future
- Advances your firms capabilities
- Falls within the company plans
- Gets the project out the door
- Makes you firm more marketable
I could go on and on, but you get the idea. There needs to be some focus on why you chose the route you want to take. You need to define and defend your decision.
If it is a mystery (as sometimes hardware and software problems are) then stack the options for recovery into priority. You don’t reformat a server hard drive because one file is lost. You start small and move to more invasive measures as you proceed.
By listing and analyzing your options, better decisions will be achieved.